The Unexpected Development of Live Stream Technology – How Big Can it Become?

The Unexpected Development of Live Stream Technology – How Big Can it Become?

Live streaming is taking over the world, and it seems so commonplace now that it is hard to believe that the technology has only been used for a few years. Social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter have helped boost live streaming to worldwide notoriety, and now it is being used for almost everything.

Live streaming is taking over the world, and it seems so commonplace now that it is hard to believe that the technology has only been used for a few years. Social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter have helped boost live streaming to worldwide notoriety, and now it is being used for almost everything. While the internet has already made the world a much smaller place, live streaming is connecting people even more so that now they can feel as though they are actually witnessing an event which could be occurring thousands of miles away from them. Live streaming has been an unexpected phenomenon, and it is definitely here to stay. But just how big can it become?

What are the Origins of Live Streaming and how did it Initially Develop?

People have been spectators since the dawn of time. Cave paintings found in the Lascaux caves in France depict athletes sprinting and wrestling for sport around 15,300 years ago. More recently, the Romans built the Coliseum in AD 80, a huge venue which could house 50,000 to 80,000 spectators. People flocked to watch gladiators and other primitive sports back then, and the tradition has continued into the modern age. Nowadays, sports like football and basketball are watched by millions of people worldwide, but sports aren’t the only things that people want to watch live.  

People have also enjoyed watching smaller games being played for some time. Poker, for instance, has always been a game which has provided excitement for viewers. The World Series of Poker has been televised since the late 1970s and, although at the time viewers couldn’t see the players’ cards, there was enjoyment to be found in watching the psychology involved. This is why the event in Las Vegas always attracts spectators to the live games as well.

Broadcasters have been bringing live events to television for some time, and the first televised sporting event in the US was a college baseball game between the Columbia Lions and the Princeton Tigers in 1939. Aside from sports, live television shows have been in existence since 1958. Live streaming takes this concept one step further and has made live videos more accessible to people everywhere via the internet. Sites like Twitch were early pioneers in the technology, and the gaming site rapidly grew after its inception in 2011. Facebook introduced Facebook Live in January of 2017, and this helped the platform gain traction rapidly as the billions of users of the social networking site embraced it. Now, it is possible for anyone, anywhere, to create a live stream and provide entertainment for viewers.

How Have Different Industries Taken Advantage of the Technology?

One of the biggest industries to have taken advantage of live streaming is the online casino sector. In an effort to bring the real world casino experience to players in their own homes, a lot of online casinos now offer live links to real table games like roulette and blackjack.

The technology has also been used to make more poker events available to viewers, with online poker sites like 888poker frequently hosting live events. There are many different No Limit Texas Hold’em and Pot Limit Omaha events on the 888poker Live calendar, including the 888Live Festival at the Aspers Casino in London. Poker players enjoy watching live events because they can see experts in action and learn from them. They can observe their betting strategies in relation to the cards they are holding, and look to replicate their winning methods.

Other industries are quickly realizing they can easily take advantage of live streaming as a way to draw more attention to their businesses. With the emergence of the platform on social networking sites, a number of public figures have emerged. Lifestreamers like Justin Kan of Justin.tv have thousands of followers, so they can be used to influence markets. Companies that want to sell their products often collaborate with these social influencers to get them to promote things. For instance, Alfie Deyes recently attracted 169,000 likes on a picture of himself juggling pots of Nutella.

What Could Happen to Live Streaming in the Future?

With live streaming still in its early stages, there is a lot of potential for it to get even better in the next few years. There are certainly ways in which it could adapt and evolve to make people’s live viewing experiences even more enjoyable and immersive.

There is a chance that the next step for live streaming will be to combine it with virtual reality. VR is still tipped to be the next big thing, with VR and AR revenue set to explode to $192.7 billion in 2022 according to projections from Statista. But with the industry still in its fledgling stages, nobody knows quite what to expect. There is no doubt, though, in the potential applications for the futuristic technology. The poker industry is certainly one which could benefit from a combination of live streaming and VR. With the rise of online poker sites, the differences between online and live play have become vast. But if VR was used to enable online players to sit around the same virtual table at the same time, it could bridge the gap between the two ways of playing. A real life dealer could be virtually dealing the cards through the use of live streaming, and the events could be streamed by viewers at home as well. This kind of combination of the platforms could be used in other games like eSports, and would give the viewer a highly immersive experience.

The rise of live streaming has come out of nowhere but the fact that it has quickly become so widely used suggests it will be around for some time. The future is uncertain for the platform but it is likely that it will become even more immersive with the help of VR.

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